Singapore Government decides on two casinos - a wise decision
18 Apr 2005: The Government of Singapore has today decided to have two integrated resorts with casinos to be operational by 2009. Attacting an investment of SGD 5 billion, some 35,000 jobs is expected to be created. The Government cited the need to reverse the decreasing fortunes of the tourism industry, maintenance of Singapore's position as an Air Hub, increasing competition from major cities willing to re-invent itself, and the quality of the proposals as major factors in the decision.In order to pacify the critics, safeguards such as high entrance fee for Singaporeans and PRs, and a system to prevent entry to those who can ill aford to gamble will be esthablished.
Bishop Robert Solomon, vice president of the National Council of Churches of Singapore, said: "We are disappointed we are going in this direction. On our own part, we need to educate members on the casinos, the dangers of gambling, and perhaps develop services and help train members to help those with gambling addiction, and promote family values." Within the Gay Christian community there is suprprisingly the same concerns.
Contrary to the prevailing religious opinion, we would like to applaud the Government on a wise and brave decision being made. We applaud the Government because they have made the right decision based on the best long term interest of Singaporeans. The opposition by Christian Groups is disturbing because it shows a lack of understanding of the bible.
The Christian Faith is about changing the heart, and not changing the actions, or establishing laws so that people will not be tempted to fall into sin. When the Jews establish the Torah laws or the 10 commandments, they claim that they can follow it, and willing to bear the punishment if they fail to do so. It is self righteousness that made them think that way. At best, it only an outward change of the behaviour. In Singapore, the laws are stringently enforced and therefore you have peace. But if the law is taken away, when Singaporeans venture into Malaysia, you will see the ugly side of Singaporeans. The law constrained them, but they never really changed. The Church wants laws and more laws whereas true Christian faith talks about freedom in Christ Jesus. Gay Christians are trapped by the same kind of religious mentality. They have to escape Egpyt, the carnal man, into order to be effective for the Gay community.
The Christian Faith is about changing people from the heart. When Jesus came, he interpreted the 10 commandments both by actions and by intentions. i.e. even if you did not commit murder in action, but in your heart you hold hatred and animosity, you already killed the person. You are guilty of adultery by a second look when a beutiful Girl wlk past scantily clothed resulting in sexual fantasies. You have already commited adultery by thought. Similarly for Gays, there are too many distractions, too many handsome guys that our eyes are constantly caught by. Both straight and Gay Christians have not had their hearts circumsized. Have we really changed ? or is our Christianity "play play" only.
The decision by the Government sets a positive precedence for the Gay community in that the Government intends to separate between State and Religion. In USA, the freedom that the blacks has today was never a decision initially supported by the mainstream churches, so would one day the Government will finally make decisions in favor of Gays. In Singapore, we will one day reach a point where Homosexual sex will be decriminalized and Gay marriage legalized. Why? because injustice is never a good law. It keeps a large percentage of the population not achieving their potential and in a competitive and innovative world environment, we cannot display an inconsistent position. Therefore, the decision of the casinos gives us hope.
The disturbing resistance by Gay Christians of the Integrated resorts shows clearly that the Christian Gays are still trapped in their religious mindset. The consequences of such mindset is that they are likely to suffer from internal homophorbia. i.e. they know they can't change, and so will hate themselves for it because of their religious inclinations.
Christian Gays in Singapore need a Pentecost. It was the Pentecostals at Azuza Street in 1904 by the move of the Spirit of God that accepted both Blacks and Whites together as members of the body of Christ and not the mainstream churches who were the strongest proponent of segregation. In unity, the pentecostals tarry before God, and the gift of tongues and baptism of the Holy Spirit was restored.
Father God, let your latter rain fall upon Gay Christians in Singapore. Let us not have a heart of stone, but a soft heart that the commandments of God be written inwardly in our hearts. Let us be a group neither indulging in Liberal nor fundamentalist Christianity, but true to your word as it was written and intended to mean. Father God, let us be led and taught by your Holy Spirit.